The global average age is increasing and is quickly becoming a common topic in the consumer and medical world. The aging population creates a much greater demand for medical device products, biotechnology, and pharmaceutical than experienced ever before. One of the most crucial ways to stay independent is to have the tools required to accomplishing daily living activities. These include being able to get dressed, get up and down from a bed, chair, or toilet seat and be mobile. As the aging progresses, many older adults require in-home medical equipment to support their health and continuing their daily living activities.
Many of these tools are suggested by healthcare professionals, though, there are some tools that you can invest in without any prescription if you see that stability, mobility, the range of motion, or overall health begin to decline in your loved one. When applied as per their usage, these medical tools or equipment can make your loved one’s life easier, happier, healthier, and stress-free.
Below are some of the medical equipment and tools you can turn to if you have an older adult living with you.
#1 Mobility Aids: Types, Benefits, and Use
Mobility aids are devices designed to assist people who have problems moving around. Typically, older adults who are at risk of falls are prescribed to use mobility aids. Even when older adults can still walk, mobility devices can provide additional safety, particularly for days when your loved one will be on his/her feet for long periods. Types of mobility aids include:
Canes – canes support the body’s weight and help spread the load from the legs to the upper body. Types of canes include:
- Forearm canes: offers extra forearm support allowing greater weight to be distributed from the waist to the arm
- Quad canes: quad canes have four feet at the bottom providing a wider base and greater balance
- White canes: white canes are designed specifically for visually impaired people. These canes are thinner and longer than traditional canes and enable the users to detect objects in their path
Crutches – crutches assist transfer load from the legs to the upper body. Types of crutches include:
- Platform crutches
- Forearm (lofstrand) crutches
- Axillary crutches
Walkers – Walkers have a metal framework with four legs providing support and stability to the user. These stable walking aids are preferred by most older adults.
Halo HealthCare provides professional assistance with Activities of Daily Living.
Wheelchairs – wheelchairs are used by the older adults who should not put their weight on their lower limbs.
Transfer Aids and Lifts – transfer aids and lifts are used for the assistance transferring an individual from one place to another such as from bed to wheelchair and to bathroom, vehicle. Types of transfer aids include:
- Gait belts
- Transfer boards
- Chairs with built-in lifts
- Hoyer lift, etc
#2 Bathroom Safety Aids
Bathrooms are one of the most dangerous rooms in a house. If you have a senior living with you, you should put extra focus on remodeling your bathroom because sound stability is needed to get in and out of the bathtub, and up and down from the toilet. Bathroom safety is of utmost importance when you have a senior living with you. Having the following equipment in your bathroom can ease the daily living of your loved one.
- Grab bars to accommodate aging grips when entering or exiting the shower or the toilet or the bathtub
- Non-slip flooring to avoid trips and falls like adhesive stickers and non-slip strips in the bathtub and the shower area for greater stability
- Bath seating
- Hand-held shower handle
- Toilet seat riser
- Converting to a walk-in shower or bathtub
#3 Health Aids
Sometimes doctors are quick to brush off older adults as potential users for health technology. However, those snap judgments are not essentially rooted in truth. Most seniors are already adapting to mobile technology. As aging at home becomes a priority to many, health technology and aids are making it happen. Keep your loved one by offering health tech solutions and aids in these categories:
- Sensors and Monitoring equipment like glucometer, BP monitor, and other equipment that monitors vital signs and alerts
- Senior Engagement tools like mobile applications for cognitive skill building, weight loss, chronic condition management, and more
- Portable oxygen tank
- Catheter supplies
- Stationary oxygen tank
- Compression clothing
- Continence supplies and more
#4 Exercise Aids
As we age, mobility decrease and exercise becomes more difficult to achieve. However, for seniors, there are plenty of exercise aids that they can use to keep their body in check. These devices can be used while standing, sitting, or even laying to help maintain the general physical fitness including flexibility and range of motion. Exercise aids include:
- Free weights for legs and arms
- Stationary floor pedals
- Handheld exercise balls
- Exercise bands
The mentioned safety and medical aids can enhance both the independence and health of your loved one. These medical aids can be utilized ongoing or while recuperating from an injury or illness.